Construction Emissions Analysis Procedures

Focus Area

Air Quality


Air Quality







Research Idea Scope

Background:  Construction activities can produce fugitive dust and exhaust emissions of criteria pollutants from heavy duty construction equipment.  The AASHTO Air Quality Community of Practice issued State of the Practice reports on Short Term Impacts from Construction Equipment and Operations; and Construction Emissions Analysis that summarize the current State DOT practices for addressing these emissions along with selected research documents, reports, and online resources.  While various tools do exist, the States’ experiences highlight the difficulties estimating emissions for individual equipment and construction activities at the environmental review stage of project development.  During this stage, there is typically very limited data available on the number, types, and usage of equipment.  The reports also note the need for best modeling practices to predict construction emissions and evaluate mitigation strategies.  

Scope:  The purpose of this research is to: 

1) Collect emissions information for specific construction equipment and activities for various project types, including existing information; 

2) Determine the best modeling practices to predict construction emissions;

3) Evaluate cost and benefits for various mitigation strategies; and 

4) Develop a streamlined emissions analysis technique to estimate project level construction emissions.  The procedure could include screening thresholds, template protocols, default equipment assumptions, or interface modeling software.

Urgency and Payoff

Despite no regulatory requirement (for projects lasting less than five years), projects around the county are already analyzing construction emissions because of State directives or public requests to do so.  This research would develop the tool(s) to allow State DOTs to efficiently and consistently evaluate construction-related emissions of criteria pollutants.  

Suggested By